After the charter fishing trip, the rest of the weekend was simply exploring the area. The views of this small fishing town are spectacular: mountains all around, clouds hanging off the mountains and a beautiful water inlet.
We started the morning with a quick breakfast at the hotel we were staying at (best western). We explored the town by car and then stopped by Nat Shack for lunch.
Lunch was great – the food truck was a bit slow in getting the orders out but it was well worth the wait. The chips, salsa and guacamole were great (the guacamole 🥑 was made fresh). The gyro crunch wrap was on point.
After lunch we headed over to the Valdez Historical Archive as well as the annex part of the same museum. It was interesting to learn of the local history and the two disasters that happened here: a massive Exxon oil spill from March 1989 (additional info here) and an earthquake from March 1964. The museum was well worth the stop.
After the museum we walked around a dock a few people were fishing off of. Such a beautiful place.
Soon after we stopped by two breweries: Valdez Brewing and Growler Bay Brewing. Valdez Brewing was just starting to get pretty busy when we stopped by. I tried something light: a Strawberry Kiwi Whit: a curiously good flavor.
Growler Bay Brewing is just down the street from Valdez Brewing. They are small-scale brewery and are only open on Saturdays 4pm – 8pm. I think it is worth the wait for them to open and they certainly are very busy when they are.
So for dinner we were wanting some Chinese food – the town only has one. Oddly enough it has been a part of the town for over 20 years: Fu Kung Chinese Restaurant.
Dishes were pretty good and the customer service was fantastic.
The drive back to Fairbanks was interesting. We made several stops, the first stop was an unfinished rail tunnel.
Next stop was Worthington Glacier. It was beautiful but unfortunately due to land slides, we were not able to hike to it.
Next on the drive: a good sight of the Wrangle Mountains. The Wrangle-St Elias is an absolutely massive national park with 13.2 million acres and 18,008 feet at its peak.
The rest of the drive home was pretty uneventful. We stopped by a terrible Latin Cuisine place near the park. They were literally one of the few serving food in the area. We also ran into the same section of road that was being heavily under construction.
We did manage to see several moose alongside the highway. Definitely still cool to see these huge animals.
Dinner was at Delta Brewing Company in Delta Junction Alaska. They have a fantastic Scottish Ale on tap.
Unfortunately the further north we drove, the worse the smoke from all the raging fires became. At least we were able to have a nice, clear sky for much of the weekend.
….oh here is what the freezer looks like once we got home from this trip 🐟🎣